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Thread: Why did Rodgers call the TIBIA Speaker channel "TIBIA" channel and not a "SOLO"...

  1. #1
    pp Pianissimo Eric Mack's Avatar
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    Why did Rodgers call the TIBIA Speaker channel "TIBIA" channel and not a "SOLO"...

    As I learn more about Theater Organs and the Rodgers 340 in specific, I am trying to wrap my head around terminology and concepts.

    My question: Why did Rodgers call the TIBIA Speaker channel the "TIBIA" channel and not a "SOLO" channel (or chamber) that happens to have only the Tibia Rank on it?

    Does that question make sense? Here's what led to that question:

    As I understand it, the Rodgers Century 340 Theater Organ is composed of 4 organs:
    Solo
    Great
    Accompaniment + Accompaniment Second Touch
    Pedal

    And the console.

    THEN, in terms of speaker channels, the stock Rodgers 340 has 4 channels. these are:
    MAIN
    TIBIA
    BRASS (which can be mixed into TIBIA Channel to reduce # of speakers, if desired)
    PEDAL

    THEN. in terms of expression shoes, there are two
    MAIN
    SOLO

    As I understand it, these represent two CHAMBERS of a Pipe Organ, each with virtual swell shades, so to speak.

    I checked the audio circuits that are fed by the MAIN and SOLO expression shoes and these get routed to the MAIN and TIBIA speaker channels (see above).

    SO, MY QUESTION: Why did Rodgers call the TIBIA Speaker channel the "TIBIA" channel and not a "SOLO" channel that happens to have only the Tibia Rank on it?

    Thanks,

    Eric
    Rodgers 340
    Los Angeles

  2. #2
    Administrator Admin's Avatar
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    It's because your organ's audio channels are not based on chambers, but rather the tone generation scheme of the organ and how that is employed to best reproduce the voices. In this organ, the Tibia's have a dedicated set of generators designed to best reproduce the non-complex flute tones. There are other generators for strings and reeds. They are kept apart in order to minimize distortion, improve ensemble, and in some installations, to permit the Tibias to be channeled to rotary speakers.

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    pp Pianissimo Eric Mack's Avatar
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    Thank you for your detailed response. That helps a lot. So, as a student of all of this, I will consider that the 340 has the 4 organs (Solo, Great, Accompaniment, and Pedal) and the Tibia system (sound generator, amp and speaker as one channel) are still part of the solo organ (because I see that the solo expression channel controls it) .

    Would that be an appropriate way for me to sum this up?

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    Well, yeah, but theatre organs are not configured like classical instruments. So while it's correct to refer Great, Accompaniment, etc. organs for classical organs, it's not meaningful for theatre organs. For example, in a theatre organ, the same Tibia rank will be playable from all divisions due to unification whereas in a classic organ without any unification, ranks are associated with their divisions and are playable on other divisions only through the use of couplers.

    Back to your original question: the take-away is that in an electronic organ there is no equivalency between audio channels and chamber layouts, and, in theatre organ pipe organ there is no fixed equivalency between divisions and chambers.

  5. #5
    pp Pianissimo Eric Mack's Avatar
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    Thank you, Admin, for the helpful response and background. I'm still learning but grateful for have a resource like OrganForum and the people like you that are willing to pass along their knowledge to help those who want to learn.

  6. #6
    ff Fortissimo toodles's Avatar
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    1 members found this post helpful.
    The Rodgers 340 is one of their few larger organs that are completely unitized--as such, there are no manual/pedal divisions. Their other theatre organs (Trios, 327, 333, 33E, 34E, etc.) actually did have tone keyers assigned to different divisions, so they were not quite as fully unitized as the 340 or a theatre pipe organ.

    Small and medium sized theatre pipe organs would be installed in two chambers, main and solo, and so expression on most electronic theatre organs follows that standard if expression is divided. The Tibia is strictly a solo voice if it is realistically and properly voiced--it has too strong a sound to serve accompaniment purposes, and the concert flute is the flute to use for accompaniment. The Tibia, therefore, is expressed with the solo chamber.

    Tibia channel, by the way, is an electronic organ term--there are no audio channels on pipe organs, just chambers. Rodgers called it this to differentiate the signal that it carries.

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    ppp Pianississmo wilsons1003's Avatar
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    If I remember correctly, the Leslie was only used for the Concert Flute.

    Chime in please if my memory fails me, last one of these I played was in a home in the SF Bay Area in the early 80's.

    Ron in Indy

  8. #8
    ff Fortissimo toodles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wilsons1003 View Post
    If I remember correctly, the Leslie was only used for the Concert Flute.

    Chime in please if my memory fails me, last one of these I played was in a home in the SF Bay Area in the early 80's.

    Ron in Indy
    You remember correctly! The Tibia in the 340 had a rather specialized tremulant system, and the Leslie was used only for the Concert Flute. I guess they had the Leslie just because some customers wanted a "Leslie". On the Trio organs, however, the Leslie was used on the Tibia voices, but they didn't have the specialized Tibia Trem of the 340.

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